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Kenneth Cole's Cairo Gaffe Invites Cyber-Toge

Thursday, 3 Feb 2011 | 3:15 PM ET
Twitter

Looks like Kenneth Cole's impolitic tweet about Egypt has become a flashpoint for brand cyber-toge.

A new Twitter account called "KennethColePR" was opened up today, shortly after Cole's Cairo Uproar tweet. It's obviously not an official Kenneth Cole account. In fact, it seems that the main purpose of the account is to mock Kenneth Cole's Cairo gaffe.

Some examples:

People from New Orleans are flooding into Kenneth Cole stores! #KennethColeTweets

People of Haiti, fall into our store for earth-shattering savings! #KennethColeTweets

Our Tucson store is locked and loaded with Spring looks! #KennethColeTweets

People of Australia: Water up to your ankles? We've got your Kenneth Cole capris right here! #KennethColeTweets

I called Kenneth Cole and was directed to Kenneth Cole's assistant who was not aware of the incident who then took down my number. It's been about 30 minutes and I'm still waiting to hear back from PR.

Brian Sozzi, Equity Research Analyst at Wall Street Strategies told me If the Egypt tweet from the first account is in fact him, it does not shed the company in a right light at all.

"If it is again him, it is marketing gone array. Where is the integrity?" Sozzi said.

According to a source NetNet has spoken to, Kenneth Cole was in fact the source of the Egypt tweet.

Update: Statement from Kenneth Cole

I apologize to everyone who was offended by my insensitive tweet about the situation in Egypt. I’ve dedicated my life to raising awareness about serious social issues, and in hindsight my attempt at humor regarding a nation liberating themselves against oppression was poorly timed and absolutely inappropriate.

Kenneth Cole, Chairman and Chief Creative Officer

Update Update:

I think the apology is on the irrelevant side. Fact is the comments make you wonder about the thought processes behind a person running a $258 million market value company. Mr. Cole decided to put his name on the line here (company has his name…this is not Mr. Abercrombie & Fitch) as publicity stunt. In the world of retail, a brand is often the most valuable asset.

Brian Sozzi, Equity Research Analyst

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A Senior Talent Producer at CNBC, and author of "Thriving in the New Economy:Lessons from Today's Top Business Minds."

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